For more than 13 minutes Wednesday afternoon at Geasey Field, there was no score between Temple and the University of Delaware.
Temple got on the scoreboard first, but could not generate consistent offense, totaling 12 shots in a 10-4 defeat to the Blue Hens, which snapped the team’s seven-game win streak.
The Owls’ four-goal performance on Wednesday was the lowest total this season for the No. 6 ranked scoring offense in Division I.
“I think that Delaware is definitely one of our most even matches that we’ve faced,” said redshirt-senior goalkeeper Jaqi Kakalecik, who made nine saves. “We knew that they were going to be a really tough opponent for us and there’s a lot of similarities between our two offenses. So we knew that it was going to be a battle and that’s why it was back-and-forth the way it was.”
The team’s 7-1 record after the first eight games this season helped the squad earn the No. 20 ranking in the March 14 Nike/Lacrosse Magazine Division I Women’s Top 20 poll. A win against the Blue Hens on Wednesday would have tied the eight game win streak by the 2002 team, who won the Atlantic-10 Championship.
After taking a 2-0 lead at the 11:54 mark in the first period following goals from senior midfielders Nicole and Megan Tiernan, the Blue Hens answered with three consecutive goals to take the lead.
Junior attacker Brooke Williams tied the game at three with less than five minutes remaining in the first half. However, Delaware outscored Temple 7-1 in the second half, including three consecutive goals to take a 6-3 lead with 20:37 seconds remaining.
“They kind of got the momentum swing going for them,” Williams said. “So once they got one goal and then two goals, they started kind of getting in the swing of things and it was something we could control as much as we wanted to. So we could sneak a few goals in here and there but it wasn’t enough to get the job done.”
The Blue Hens and their zone defense limited the Owls to five shots in the final 30 minutes of play.
“I think down the stretch, things that we’ve been used to like coming up with the draw controls and limiting our unforced turnovers were not in our favor today,” coach Bonnie Rosen said. “We turned over a bunch of balls that really could have been ours and a lot of those 50-50 balls could have been ours and I think it was one of those days that a bunch of things didn’t come together.”
Senior attacker Brenda McDermott left the game with an ankle injury after a collision at midfield. The Harleysville, Pa. native is fourth on the team in goals and is the second-leading assister for the Owls.
Temple has more than a week before its next game against University of California, Berkeley on March 26.
“It’s the same plan had we won or lost this game…The nice part of having a break is we don’t have to let this game go so quickly and move on to our next opponent,” Rosen said. “We can actually really learn from what happened today and how to prep and we can build some things into our game over the next five days and then prepare for our opponent. So it’s a perfect break for a mature team to both recover physically, be able to learn from the game, and be able to prep for the next part of our season.”
Evan Easterling can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @Evan_Easterling.